Prior to the European Commission publishing its official strategy on the European Energy Union on 25th February, it is worthwhile to provide an overview of the EEU and what it means for the EU as a whole.
As a response to Russia’s annexation of the Crimea in April 2014, the European Council’s Polish president, Donald Tusk, has suggested the creation of the European Energy Union.
A paper released on the 6th of February by the Commission on the EEU sets out five of its interlinked dimensions.
The first dimension of the strategy is energy security, which aims at securing the EU’s energy supply. “Completing the internal energy market, deploying more renewable and other energy sources and becoming more energy efficient will all lead to more energy security,” it states in the paper.
A new deal for consumers is the second dimension, and it focuses on trading energy across borders.
Within the scope of the third dimension, energy efficiency, the Commission wants the EU to be the “most energy efficiency economy in the world,” and will encourage member states to give efficiency top priority in their energy policies.
Fourth comes decarbonisation, which emphasises reform of carbon markets as the “cornerstone” of EU climate policy.
The last dimension of the EEU, research and development, is all about favouring activities in the field of renewables and energy efficiency.
If we look at the current energy market drop, the logical question would be the necessity of the Energy Union. Maybe the best way to address this question comes from Maroš Šefčovič, the Vice President of the Energy Union:
“Some would say: do we still need an Energy Union now that the oil prices are about 50% lower than 6 months ago? Of course we do! We should use the current context, the present breathing space that is a result of lower oil and gas prices is a golden opportunity to reset our energy policy in the right direction and to take the necessary investments now. It is a golden opportunity to encourage EU Member States to reduce costly public financial support to fossil fuels, invest in renewables and low-carbon technologies and end our dependence on external sources of oil and gas.”
Written By- Natalie Durakovic